Over the next seven days we will be sharing a unique series of Clean Eating recipes, created especially for Yogamatters readers by Health Coach and Wellness Expert, Fran McElwaine. These recipes have been inspired and informed by the principles of cutting edge modern nutritional thinking, combined with the wisdom of the ancient traditions. The result is delicious food that will balance hormones, boost your health and help you maintain balance.
Clean Eating is simply a focus on real food – the sort of food your grandparents would recognize; food that has been unadulterated by industrial production and farming techniques. In essence, clean eating is about stepping away from over-processed branded food with all the chemicals and additives that are used in its production and embracing fresh whole foods as close as possible to their natural state. To quote Dr Mark Hyman, the guru of modern nutrition, there are three words that sum up Clean Eating: “Real, whole and fresh”.
Taking each Chakra in turn, and utilizing the inherent natural wisdom of real, whole, fresh ingredients, these recipes will build over the week to create a beautiful repertoire that can be used either separately, or together to create a magnificent life-enhancing feast.
All the ingredients in these recipes contribute to gut health and support de-tox pathways. They are rich in the fibre and phytonutrients which are known to optimize wellness by balancing hormones and boosting immune function.
But perhaps most importantly of all, they are delicious!
The Root Chakra – Muladhara
Beetroot Hoummos with Pumpkin and Basil Biscuits
The Root Chakra is where our sense of security rests. The Root Chakra is supported by grounding root vegetables and also seeds (that are planted in the ground and put down roots before they shoot up). Protein is important for this chakra which can be stimulated by spicy foods or cooled with leafy greens.
For this Chakra I have developed a delicious Beetroot Hoummos (the colour alone will make you feel amazing!), served with crispy crackers flavoured with fresh Basil and made from Pumpkin Seeds and nuts. The combination of earthy flavours is sublime and the hint of chilli in the Hoummos is offset by the Basil Biscuits to create the perfect balance.
This recipe is super-easy and really lovely to knock up as a quick evening meal, served with a salad and crudites. It keeps well in the fridge and any left-overs make the perfect portable lunch.
Serves 6 as a starter or 4 as a main course
- 1 tin (400g) Chick Peas, drained
- 2 large boiled beetroot, peeled and roughly chopped
- 6 tablespoons tahini
- Juice of one lemon
- 1 small chili
- 2 cloves of garlic
- Large handful coriander, roughly chopped
- ½ cup olive oil
- Salt & Pepper to taste
Throw everything into the blender and whizz until the consistency is uniform and to your liking. Feel free to add more oil, garlic or chili to your own taste.
Serve with Pumpkin & Basil Biscuits, crudités or Flatbread.
Raw Pumpkin and Basil Biscuits
Unlike the Beetroot Hoummos recipe, this recipe does require a bit of planning and thinking ahead, because the nuts and seeds need to be soaked in advance and dehydrating does take a bit of time. The reason for soaking the nuts and seeds is to release their natural enzymes in order to maximise the nutrition value and make them easier to digest. So you really need to be starting on these Biscuits at least a day before they are needed. The good news is that the finished biscuits keep for ages, especially in the fridge. Don’t be discouraged though, the effort is SO worth it. The final result is the ultimate low carb, high protein cracker that goes with everything (delicious as a base for avocado or as an on-the-go snack on its own). Ideally, these crackers are made in a de-hydrator, but they can be baked gently in a low oven.
Serves 4 – 6
- 120g Pumpkin Seeds, soaked for 4-6 hours
- 100g walnuts, soaked for 4-6 hours
- 55g sultanas, soaked for 2 hours
- 100g flaxmeal, soaked in 250ml water for 1 hour
- 2 tsp cumin seeds, soaked in 1 tablespoon water for 1 hour
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 3 sticks of celery, chopped
- Large bunch of basil (or rocket if preferred), roughly chopped
- 2 tablepsoons nutritional yeast (optional, but adds yummy umami flavour and boosts B vitamins)
- 120ml (half a cup) virgin olive oil
- Juice of one fresh lemon
Put all the ingredients into a blender and whizz until uniform in consistency. At this stage it all looks a bit like an unappetizing paste, but hang in there! Divide the mixture between two silicon sheets and spread out evenly to a thickness of about ¼ of an inch. De-hydrate for 10 hours, or overnight, then turnover, peel off the silicon sheets and de-hydrate for a further 10 hours.
Alternatively, and if you are not too fussed about eating raw, place the raw cracker mix on the silicon sheets into baking trays in a cold oven and turn on to 150 ̊C. Let the oven come up to temperature with the raw crackers inside and then bake for another 40-50 mins. When dry enough (depending on your oven it may take a little longer), turn over, gently peel off the silicon sheets and return to the oven. Bake for a further 30 minutes then turn off the oven and leave the crackers inside to dry out completely as it cools.